Story Contest 2018 #1 - Outstanding Stories (Sub-junior) » A Glass of Milk

“A Glass of Milk” is one of the outstanding stories of the first biannual International Short Story Contest 2018 written by Avighna Nambiar, Chaithanya Techno School, Bangalore, India.

A Glass of Milk

It was a cold winter morning of December. Ravi as usual had set out with his morning routine of distributing the daily newspapers, just to earn a little extra money to support his mother who worked as a daily wage laborer. Ravi’s father had already left them when he was just 2 years old.

Today, however, he was in a hurry, as it was his last exam, Science, which he was studying privately under open schooling scheme. After completing his initial tasks for the day, Ravi hurriedly started walking back home. Upon reaching home, he saw his mother starting for her day’s work. She told him, “Ravi, don’t forget to drink your milk before leaving for your exam.” Ravi nodded and went straight to get ready. By the time he got ready, it was late. So, he rushed to the exam centre without bothering to drink his milk.

The exam started at the scheduled time. Since Ravi was an intelligent boy, he did not have to struggle with the question paper. After completing the paper, he started walking back home with a sigh of relief. On the way back, he saw Radha aunty with tears in her eyes. Unable to control her emotions, she said, “My child, sorry to say that your mother met with an accident at the construction site a while ago. She has been rushed to Maithili hospital.”

Hearing this, Ravi started running towards Maithili Hospital without wasting a second. On reaching the hospital, he was shocked to see his mother lying dead on the hospital bed. Ravi could not utter a word further. Grief struck, he sat on the floor, not knowing what to do. As he sat there broken, he saw a lady being taken in a wheel chair, her face covered with bandage, with her two small children weeping bitterly. Moved by the sorrow of the children, Ravi went and enquired what the matter was and found out that the lady had lost both her eyes in a gas cylinder blast. Ravi recalled that, he had learnt in Science about eyes as one of the important sense organs of the body and there was nothing more expensive than gifting sight to someone. Immediately, he met the doctor concerned and volunteered to donate his mother’s eyes to the poor lady.

That evening he returned home, only to find himself engulfed in the silence of the house. With tears in his eyes, unable to decide what to do further, he sat down with his eyes closed. After a while,when he opened his eyes, his sight fell on the glass of milk which his mother had kept in the morning. He got up, took the glass of milk and drank and said, “Mother, you may not be with me here, but I know that you are seeing me through someone else’s eyes, and for you, I will survive.”

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